Communication hinders outreach

Participants at the Fiji Oral Health Workers Association meeting in Suva. Picture: SOPHIE RALULU

Access to communication continues to be a barrier for community health workers in rural and maritime areas.

Divisional medical officer Western Dr Susana Nakalevu noted this while closing the week-long Live More Abundantly (LMA) training program for nurses and community health workers in Lautoka recently.

“There are challenges which we, in the ministry, are analysing and are trying to strengthen for our community health workers and I am talking about Navosa and the hard to reach areas where communication is a barrier,” Dr Nakalevu said.

“There is the challenge in the communication channel with us and their community and we are working to strengthen this area.

“Our community health workers are our greatest asset, in terms of human resources, as they are our eyes and ears in the communities.”

Dr Nakalevu also acknowledged the work of civil society organisations such as the Adventists Development Relief Agency (ADRA) Fiji, for providing relevant health information to community health care workers to assist their delivery of community outreach work.

She informed about 10 participants that non-communicable diseases continued to be a major topic that generated a lot of interest and such training was vital to equip people’s understanding of the issue.

The program was conducted to train community health workers and zone nurses to roll out the LMA program in selected communities in Lautoka and surrounding areas.

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